All around the country, people are jumping for joy that spring has finally arrived. Robins are singing their sweet song, tulips and daffodils are reaching for the sky, and warmer breezes are stirring the trees’ newly-budded limbs.
Of course, these warm breezes are also spreading around a fair amount of tree, grass and flower pollen. And those April showers? They don’t just bring flowers but also mold. All of this pollen and mold is making many people sick with allergies.
If you have seasonal allergies, you know firsthand they’re not just annoying, they can be downright debilitating. Itchy, watery eyes, running or stuffy nose, and trouble breathing can seriously impact your quality of life.
According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI), pollen season can begin as early as February and last through October. So that means the next six or seven months may be brutal for many people.
What Causes an Allergic Reaction?
When allergens like pollen come in contact with your body, your immune system sees them as an invader and decides to attack. Of course, you happen to be one of the unlucky people whose immune system is overly sensitive. When other people’s immune system ignores the pollen and mold spores, yours wages an all-out war.
Some people develop allergies in their childhood while others may go symptom-free until adulthood. You may have noticed that one year you experienced mild symptoms. But by the next year, you were experiencing one or more of the following:
- Runny nose
- Itchy Eyes
- Scratchy throat
- Dry cough
- Itchy skin
- Red and puffy eyes
- Stuffed nose
How Can You Get Relief from Seasonal Allergies?
You may feel helpless this time of year but there are things you can do to alleviate your allergic symptoms. Here are some things health experts suggest:
See an Allergist
If you had symptoms last year, there is a very good chance you will have them again this year and perhaps worse. Don’t wait until the pollen and mold spores have already arrived. Make an appointment with an allergist ASAP. They will either prescribe antihistamine medication or begin a series of shots.
Keep Windows Closed
To keep tree, grass and flower pollen out of your home, keep windows shut as much as possible. After a lengthy winter, you may be tempted to air out your home, but you are only inviting the allergy culprits into your home.
Wash Hands Frequently
In the winter you wash your hands frequently to keep them free and clear of cold and flu germs. Well, you’ll want to wash your hands in the spring and summer to keep them free and clear of pollen. If you don’t, you’re apt to rub your eyes and face and cause an allergic reaction.
Irrigate Your Nasal Passages
Many people experience relief from allergy symptoms by using a neti pot to flush out pollen and mold spores from their nasal passages. The saline solution used with neti pots sterilizes nasal passages and keeps them moist as well.
Mold-Proof Your Home
As I mentioned before, it’s not just pollen that is causing your allergies, it’s also mold spores. The AAAAI recommends keeping mold out of your home by focusing on areas where moisture collects such as your basement, bathrooms and kitchen.
Remove mold from hard surfaces with special detergent, or by spraying with a bleach and water solution. Clean any fabric that has gotten moldy. If the mold does not come out, it’s best to throw that item away.
You’ll also want to consider using a dehumidifier in your basement to prevent mold and mildew from taking hold again. If it does come back, check for leaks and cracks in the foundation or pipes, and consult someone about upgrading the ventilation in your home.
Use an Air Purifier
One of the best ways to keep your home free and clear of pollen and mold spores is to use an air purifier. But not any old air purifier will do. There are some features you should definitely look for:
- HEPA Filter – A high-quality HEPA filter will be able to remove 99.97% of particles that are only 0.3 microns in diameter. This means it can eliminate the majority of allergens that cause allergic rhinitis.
- Filter Replacement Indicator – Your unit can only work well if the filter is maintained and replaced when necessary. Look for a unit that will alert you to when it’s time to clean or replace your filter. And speaking of replacing, make sure the replacement filters are affordable before buying the unit. You don’t want to have to hand over large sums of money just to keep your unit working optimally.
- The Right Size – It’s important to buy the right size unit for your rooms. A purifier that was built to handle a 300 square foot room will have a hard time cleaning the air in an 800 square foot room. For optimum results, be sure to size your rooms first and buy units that match those sizes.
With the right air purifier (and by keeping those windows shut) your home’s air will remain free and clear of pollen and mold spores. And that means you will be able to breathe much easier.
At this point, you may be wondering what the best air purifiers for allergies are. We carry a wide range of purifiers that have been constructed with allergy sufferers in mind. Using high-quality HEPA filtration systems, our line of air purifiers will not only tackle mold and pollen, but other allergens as well such as dust mites and pet dander.
We also make it incredibly easy for you to select the right unit for your home. Search by budget, or choose to browse our selection based on the size of your room. So, whether you need an air purifier for a small, medium, large or extra-large room, we’ve got you, and your square footage, covered.
And, if you have any questions at all about size or which unit might work best in your home, please feel free to contact us. Some of our Pure Breeze team members deal with allergies each year, so we know how awful it can be. We’d love to help you find the right solution for your home.